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Reply To: NBA • Friday Service Plays • 11/27/15

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Preview: Minnesota At Sacramento

When: 10:00 PM ET, Friday, November 27, 2015

Where: Sleep Train Arena, Sacramento, California

Sacramento small forward Rudy Gay has delivered back-to-back stellar performances and the Kings hope to receive another strong outing from Gay when they host the Minnesota Timberwolves on Friday. Gay is averaging 32 points over the past two games, including a season-best 36 in Wednesday’s 129-118 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks.

Gay’s big effort against Milwaukee was timely as star big man DeMarcus Cousins missed the contest with a strained lower back, and Gay’s 13-of-21 performance helped Sacramento shoot a season-best 57.1 percent from the field. “Rudy carried us offensively, but I thought the team played together,” said Kings coach George Karl afterward, “and moved the ball and found the open man so consistently.” Minnesota is hoping rookie center Karl-Anthony Towns can rebound from back-to-back subpar outings. Towns is averaging six points and four rebounds during the stretch after notching six double-doubles in the previous nine contests.

TV: 10 p.m. ET, FSN North (Minnesota), CSN California (Sacramento)

ABOUT THE TIMBERWOLVES (7-8): Point guard Ricky Rubio injured his left ankle on Monday and tried to play through it in Wednesday’s game against the Hawks but ultimately exited after playing 21 minutes. There was mild concern since it is the same ankle that limited Rubio to 22 games last season and led to offseason surgery. “You start wondering why, putting all the work I’ve been putting in,” Rubio told reporters while saying he hopes he doesn’t miss Friday’s game. “But some things you can’t control. I don’t want to be worried. I just want to work hard and be ready for the next game.”

ABOUT THE KINGS (6-10): The victory over Milwaukee was the sixth game Cousins has missed this season and marked the first time Sacramento won without his services. Cousins, who is averaging 27.9 points and 11.2 rebounds, was injured during Monday’s game at Charlotte and it is unclear whether he will be healthy enough to play against Minnesota. Cousins has eight double-doubles in the 10 games in which he has played and had nine rebounds in the other two games.


1. Sacramento has won the past four meetings.

2. Kings PG Rajon Rondo had 10 points and 13 assists against Milwaukee for his seventh double-double in the past 10 games.

3. Minnesota SG Kevin Martin is averaging just 8.6 points on 17-of-63 shooting over the past seven games.

PREDICTION: Kings 119, Timberwolves 115